Saturday, July 31, 2010

Happy 6th Anniversary!

To my beloved, Loving Husband. It doesn't seem long enough that six years has past since we got married - but I guess with travel, 1.5 kids, a house, and lots of loan debt, we've accomplished a lot in those six years. :) I love you and am so blessed to be with you! - Love, Ladyface

Friday, July 30, 2010

Flashback Friday


Ace and his father reading the Bible a year ago. Ace still loves to read that Bible and many other books with his dad. I just love this picture :)

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Twenty-Three Months Old


Tick tock, tick tock... two is just around the block... I know, I know. Cheesy... but I have a toddler - rhyming and silliness is currently what I'm 'majoring' in so you'll have to bear with me.

Ace had a great 23rd month - more new things to experience and firsts. Ace learned to jump! He loves it and hops all over the place when reminded that he can. It's pretty adorable. Ace also is very into the phrase "I gotta ____" He's gotta drive, he's gotta pick 'em, he's gotta go to the store. It's adorable and I will miss it when it's gone.

Speaking of picking Ace had several new adventures with picking berries this past month. He picked strawberries, raspberries, and blueberries this past month and my goodness what fun he did have. :) He ate his weight at each picking adventure - and had a blast. Now every time he eats berries he says "I picked 'em" or if he sees them in a picture, or in the store he says "I gotta pick 'em"

His vocabular is extensive and his understanding is mindboggling. He is quick to repeat any word, no matter the syllabal count ... so we certainly have to be more careful of what we're talking about while he's around. He retains EVERYTHING.

Ace also has taken an interest in wanting his picture to be taken. He will carry the camera over to momma and say 'Pictures, please' and so I will take his picture... he also will take his picture with me and follow the 'commands' of 'smile' or 'stick out your tongue' it's a lot of fun.

Bumps and scrapes... Ace had a few this month. On one he scraped his back on his car - pretty deep cut on his lower back - he was not a happy camper - and he really hates bandaids. He did get to experience neosporin for his first time - and that he seemed to do ok with. Ace also experienced his first burn on his finger - due to touching the coffee pot burner. Complete accident, but he did get two small blisters on his fingers - they healed without issue and never broke.

In the sickness department - the night before Ace turned 23 months old - he woke up around 3:30 in the moring and for 90 minutes off and on continued to throw up his raspberry and yogurt snack he had before bed. He wasn't happy at all - but when he woke the next morning he was a happy camper as if nothing was wrong. Mom and Dad were perplexed but continued on life as normal... long story short I took him in on Tuesday to double check that it was merely a stomach virus - and the doctor felt he was fine and if there was any left in his system that it was normal and would work itself out. I'm glad that he wasn't feel bad, aside from when he did throw up. He is far from a fan of that.

Ace continues to love to floss. Every night. His dentist would be so proud. Brushing his teeth, he doesn't seem to care one way or another - but we don't have fits about it - but he doesn't run in there to brush his teeth. He will run in there to floss though... silly boy!

He is a joy, a blessing, and an all around good kid. He certainly has started to venture into tantrums but they never last long and are often corrected and he says he's sorry. He loves to say prayers - sometimes he'll ask to say them in the middle of the day 'Prayers' or 'pray to Jesus' it melts my heart and I know that we're so far doing pretty good with this kid.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

16 Weeks

You may have noticed a lack in blogging in recent days. A lot has been happening in and around my world. Mostly around it - to friends of mine. Sometimes in life things happen that knock you on your ass - and you never would have fathomed it. A friend of mine found out her nine month old daughter has cancer. The word no parents or individual ever wants to hear. Yet on Friday night there they were faced with it. It causes everyone to stop and pause. To rush to help in whatever way possible, but for the most part all we can do is hope and pray for their little baby girl. It puts into greater perspective how much I should never take for granted the health and development of my own children. We never know what may be around the next corner.

Sunday marked the 16th week of pregnancy for me. Saturday marked Ace turning 23 months old. A post on his 23rd month will be arriving shortly, I promise. Late Friday night I blogged that I was able to hear her (or his) heart for the first time and what a wonderful experience that was.

Baby  is growing at a nice and steady rate. Baby's crown to rump length is 11 or 12 cm or 5 inches. Therefore, never to disappoint in object comparison that means baby is the size of an avocado or the length of my mascara tube. Baby weighs about 100-150 grams or 3.5-5.3 ounces. Momma's belly continues to expand.

Baby's eyes and ears are in their proper place now. Baby's circulatory system is completely functional. Baby's sweat glands are developing. Baby's heart now pumps about 25 quarts of blood per day! That's crazy! Lots of things happening! Baby continues to grow, mom continues to feel better and better ... on most days. Life continues on.

If you get a moment and you think about it - please pray for my friend and her family. When I feel it appropriate I will provide more details. Thank you.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Woosh Woosh Woosh

Today, I went in for a non-routine check up that we simply morphed into my routine check up. I went in today (my scheduled appointment was set for next Tuesday) but I was having a multitude of symptoms that individually, all are simply pregnancy in all its delight... but combined I was ever slightly nervous and figured - it won't cost me anything to go but time - so why not see if they can fit me in and check me out. And they happily did just that.

Our sixteen week appointment is the fun appointment! The one we get to hear the heartbeat for the first time! :) Yay! All the other appointments they've simply measured it on the ultrasound monitor. So we've only seen her (or his) heart beating not heard it. That woosh woosh woosh - Baby TIME's heart rate had been measuring relatively high and steady the last few appointments at 155. This appointment it was beating at 142. All happy and normal.

All my aches and issues ended up being standard - which if I had only had one or two I would have thought nothing but the same - but combined with them all I started to wonder... so after a good check to make sure baby's not trying to make a WAY too early break for it - and determining nope not even slightly - we're all good. Momma and Baby are doing fine. Momma has some back pain, pressure, and round ligament pain that she's been experiencing pretty consistently now for a while - but it's survivable - and all for an excellent cause. :)

They did the blood work that would have been done on Tuesday, so I won't have to go back in for that - and of course took my weight - I'm gaining at just the right 'rate' oh goodie. I was trying to remember how my weight gain was last pregnancy - but I forgot to ask - so I'll have to next time to see how they compare. :) Baby is healthy and happy and I'm assuming squirming away - still can't feel him (or her) yet.

Friday, July 23, 2010

Flashback Friday


Ace was almost a solid 11 months old, and we were venturing to a local tot's cafe to play with a whole new aray of toys. He's grown so much since then. He is far from a baby these days. But he still loves to give hugs!

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Jumping!

Ace is rapidly approaching two years old - but he's still a growing and developing boy - so we still are getting new and firsts for him. This past weekend Ace learned to jump! He's been doing a 'hop' sort of thing for a while now, but this is the first time he's been able to get air with both feet from a standing position. He's so excited he can jump now. He's been jumping all over the place.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Craziness & Conversation

Life around here feels crazy. I'm not sure if it truly is anymore crazy than normal, but it certainly feels that way. Not sure why - but in some regard I hope the feeling passes or a new normalcy sets in. Whew. Aside from the craziness feeling, life is great. Ace is doing wonderfully, talking up a storm. He holds lengthy conversations now and discusses all sorts of things. Impressing pretty much every new person he meets with his vocabulary and ability communicate so clearly. He's doing great. Here's a small video of Ace discussing what he had to eat, wants to eat, and where it is located. :)

Friday, July 16, 2010

Flashback Friday

I love these girls. Sometimes in the summer it is crazy and nearly impossible for us all to get together - so we took a Sunday morning back in the summer of 2008 and gathered to have a brunch in Jackie's backyard. It was a lot of fun.

Monday, July 12, 2010

14 Weeks

The sun has been out and it has been lovely! I'm at a nice manageable size that the heat isn't really affecting me - which is a nice change from my first pregnancy - I certainly feel for those pregnant friends of mine that are much further along now! Luckily today is cooler - which is delightful.

Today baby is the size of a lemon or the size of a flip phone. Baby has tripled in size from three weeks ago. Baby's crown to rump length is 9-10 cm or 3.5-4.0 inches. Baby weighs about 50 grams or 1.75 ounces. It's crazy how fast they grow. This week begins the time when baby starts inhaling and exhaling - practicing breathing.

Baby is moving more gracefully and purposefully now, or so I'm told ;) I still am not really feeling baby move on a regular basis yet. Although I'm hopeful any day now - since with a second pregnancy 14 weeks seems to be the more 'magical' number for feeling the baby. Baby also has finger prints now - that are just how they are going to be forever. That's pretty crazy to think about.

I haven't been terribly sick at all in a couple of weeks now. I still am getting a wave of nausea every now and then and the last two days 'exhaustion' has returned. Hoping all of that exits my system before our trip to Hawaii.

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Strawberry Jam

Yep, I've been busy busy in the kitchen and being out and about in the sun. Last week I took my son strawberry picking. He had a great time. He ate probably as many as we picked to bring home - so we certainly got our money's worth out of those strawberries. I picked a flat worth and came home with them for $4.60. Can't beat that. I was going to work with my friend the next day to make jam (my first time) but she had unfortunate news at a routine doctor's appointment that resulted in surgery and bed rest for the remainder of her pregnancy. She's doing well, but making jam with me was certainly out of the question, understandably!

So I headed to the store and purchased all the canning materials that I would need and during my son's nap I got started on the cleaning and getting the strawberries ready to get cookin'.

I manged to get get all the strawberries cleaned and ready to cook right as my son woke from his nap, so at least I didn't have a helper eating every other berry, so that's good. I was hoping though to not have to ignore him while I stirred constantly the jam mixture... but he was a good guy and entertained himself while I did my best to attempt my first jam session (hehe.)



I timed the jars being hot and done in the dishwasher perfectly to the jam being complete on the stove and I was pretty encouraged by that - our dishwasher takes eons to complete the cycle and even longer for the heat dryer to finish. After I funneled in the jam, I stuck them in the canner. Success!

All of the lids sealed and happily were setting on the counter, but by the end of the evening I was a bit discouraged because it seemed I had more syrup than jam. Hooey! I was worried I was going to have to dump and repeat with a bit more pectin... but all they needed was the full 24 hours and they are happy jars of jam now hiding in the closet under our stairs.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Raspberry Tart

Ok I've established that pregnant women should NOT be allowed to watch the Food Network - it's dangerous and results in even more 'cravings' or salivating moments. The other day I switched it on and Paula Deen got my taste buds watering from multiple angles (in fact she was the initiator for my baked potato craving.) In that same episode she made this delicious tart and it instantly moved to the top of my list to create and consume.

I didn't own a tart pan, but there is no time like the present to go and purchase one - and so on Friday, amid my other errands, a quick trip to Bed Bath and Beyond with a coupon was at the top of my list. They had the perfect dish and it came home with us right away.

I'll leave the recipe details up to Ms. Paula Deen and allow you to go directly to her link to obtain the instructions. I did two things differently. One on accident, which was to use granulated sugar in the crust instead of powdered. I just was on auto pilot and it was too late to correct it and I wasn't terribly enthused at the thought of wasting 3/4 cups of butter - so I figured I'd give it a go with the granulated sugar. I think it caused the crust to thicken a tad more, so a little tougher to 'cut' through than the powdered sugar, and the 'sweetness' was a bit less with the granulated sugar. Where as, I think it would have been sweeter with the powdered, but it worked out just fine. The only other alteration to the recipe was that I didn't use blueberry pie filling, I had just recently picked raspberries at a U-Pick farm, so I used those as my topping instead.

The worst part was waiting. :) I cooked the tart crust during the afternoon (before I put in the potatoes.) The tart crust has to fully cool before you can put the filling in. So I created the crust and then waited until after Ace went to bed to finish.
Tips that I would offer to make the 'cooking' process easier or less guess work. Make sure your heavy cream is super cold, slowly add the sugar to the bowl (so none collects on the bottom) and then ramp up to a fast beating of it. I had left it on a medium speed on the mixer and it just wasn't fluffing, my mom suggested to speed it up because what you're trying to do is get air into it... well that makes sense. :) So after I cranked up the speed, it was quite fluffy pretty quickly.



It was delicious. And yes it was my breakfast :) With the pecans on the bottom of the tart crust when eating it, it almost has the flavoring like you're eating a pecan pie without all the goo, but then also add in a light cheese cake flavor, but without the thickness and the fresh and sweetness of raspberries. This is a dangerous recipe! SO GOOD!

A fun feature of this tart pan that I bought, is that the base of the pan lifts out - so you just push on the bottom and you can easily move the tart out of the pan for super easy cutting and of course display.


sooo hard to put this in the fridge and go to bed!

Baked Potatoes

Ok in the middle of a heat streak turning on the oven is one of the last things that a normal person would want to do, but considering the house was already 85', what is a few more degrees at that point, really? We already had evacuated to the outdoors for water play and the fact that it cooled down immensely in the few hours and was cooler outside than inside, and I just had a craving: baked potatoes!

However, I hadn't cooked a baked potato in years - if ever in fact. I couldn't actually recall a time I had officially baked a potato, I've certainly boiled them and then mashed them up, but no recollection of baking them. So I went to the Internet to find myself a good link with instructions on how best to cook one, what temp, how long and I happily found this link.

Ingredients:
4 potatoes - scrubbed clean
olive oil
coarse sea salt
sour cream
cheddar cheese
green onions
bacon pieces (Hormel makes some good bacon pieces that are real bacon so you don't have to cook it and make the mess yourself!)
salt and pepper

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350' (you can cook it at a higher heat for a shorter time, see the link for details)
  2. Scrub and wash the potatoes in cold water, do not soak them or wash in hot water. This causes the skin to start cooking itself and the inside will not catch up and the skin will not be as tasty later.
  3. Rub/roll the potatoes in olive oil and then coarse sea salt. Puncture 4 - 1 inch slices into the potatoes on all sides - to allow steam to vent out (otherwise you'll get an exploded potato in your oven. EEK!)
  4. Put directly on the oven rack (rack should be in the middle of the oven, not too high or low) - I recommend putting a flat baking sheet on the rack below to catch any excess oil drips and/or sea salt that will fall off.

  5. Cook for 60-75 minutes. Mine were 'average to small' size potatoes and they cooked 75 minutes and were perfect.
  6. LOAD EM UP and eat!

I likely would cook them at 400' for less time, but since it was so hot in the house - heating the oven that high seemed like a horrific idea at the time - so waiting the extra time was well worth the heat temp in the house only climbing 2 degrees. The potatoes were delicious and the skin (which is where most of the vitamins are) was freakin' amazing!!!

Friday, July 9, 2010

Flashback Friday - Then and Now

Then
A year ago yesterday this was Ace and Sabria. Ace was 10.5 months old and Sabria was 13 months old. It's amazing to see where they are now. This picture below was taken yesterday. Ace is 22.5 months old and Sabria is 25 months old. They're growing up so fast.

Now

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Summer is here!

Yipee! Sound the trumpets! Break out the Popsicles! Summer has found its way to the Northwest! YahoO!!! Am I excited? Absolutely! I am done with the dreary COLD weather! Brrr. Done done done! Looking forward to being HOT! Yes, I am! To kick off our summer excitement Ace and I went to pick strawberries. :) Ace had a blast and so did his mom and for $4.60 we got a flat of strawberries, enough to make jam and have plenty to snack on for a day or two.... or an hour or two if Ace has his way. ;-)

While out at the U-Pick Farm we had a great time hunting for berries amid the plants. Ace got the hang of picking the early and ate probably as many as we picked to take home... so a LOT. Nicely they are naturally grown and not covered in pesticides so it's ok.

After we got home, we broke out the pool and the spray bottle... a current giggly favorite. Seriously this kid loves to spray the bottle in his face and just laugh and laugh. It's actually quite adorable.

At one point he fell into his pool, and mom got quite the action shot. He recovered nicely and continued to play - perhaps even cooler than he was beforehand.



Monday, July 5, 2010

Dessert!!

Don't fret - again as usual - my family is still eating! Yet with pregnancy comes morning sickness and getting inventive in the kitchen isn't at the top of the priority list.

Dessert though is a must and when I hopped onto Two of a Kind's blog I found this tasty treat! What better occassion to make this dessert than the 4th of July!

Ingredients I used:
Box of brownie Mix
3/4 cup sugar
2 8oz blocks of Cream Cheese
bananas(I used 3)
Chocolate Chips(use as many or as few as you'd like)

I would have used only 1.5 blocks of cream cheese - it was a bit thick - but still yummy and I also added more sugar to make the cream cheese 'frosting' a bit more sweet. Tossed on some patriotic sprinkles on top and it was ready to go! It was tasty!

13 Weeks

Today Baby is a peach... or at least the size of one... or a nutter butter covered in chocolate, yum! Baby's crown to rump length is 7-9 cm or 3.0-3.5 inches. Baby weighs about 35 grams or 1.25 ounces. Baby TIME's teeth sockets are starting to take formation and hair follicles are forming.

Mommy's belly is sticking out more and more on a regular basis. The past few weeks even though I look ginormous in some instances (for being under 20 weeks) it doesn't always stay that way and when I lie down my stomach basically disappears. It's a weird phenomenon. Morning sickness is winding down, I haven't felt sick every day now for a week or so. I just get random waves every now and again. Hoping that we continue to trend that direction!

My friend Angie is due on November 11th with her first (a boy!), so she's in her 21st week and I am in my 13th. Here we are nearly 'neck and neck' for the belly war face off... ok not really she's winning by a few weeks. ;-)

Happy 4th of July!


We had a wonderful 4th of July! Ace aboslutely loved it. We started off the day before lighting off a few 'baby' fireworks for him to see what they were all about. Then in the morning PopPop and Gran came over, so we lit off a few sparklers, roman candles and bees. Ace had a blast and kept saying 'more more more' and requesting the booms, sparkles, and crackles.

We headed to our friend's Brad and Angie's for the festive BBQ and fun. We were lucky and escaped all signs of rain in the area we were in, thank goodness! Ace had a blast playing in the backyard running around and then later lighting fireworks off with his dad. He also made a new best friend in Jackie. Which was excellent because it allowed for mom to do what she loves, take pictures of the fireworks and for dad to do what he loves, light them off. So THANK YOU to Jackie for watching him during the bulk of the big lighting of things.

Ace enjoyed holding his first sparkler (with a bit of help) and the roman candles with dad. He also stayed awake the entire night and not a bit fussy. He kept asking for more crackles, sparkles, and fire throughout the evening! We got him in the car around 11pm and was out within 10 minutes. We had a great day! To see our adventures last year, click here.

Friday, July 2, 2010

Flashback Friday


Happy Independence Weekend! This was our celebration last year. Look how festive we were. :) Not sure if we'll be quite as coordinated as we were last year (unless Loving Husband and I wear the same outfits again, hehe.) We had a good time visiting friends and lighting off our own fireworks (well... I watched from a safe distance with the camera.) Here's the post on our adventures.